Speak up on Sexual Harassment: Jameela Nishat advises Girls

The programme was organized by the Internal Complaint Committee (ICC), MANUU to commemorate 8 years of enactment of ‘Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act of 2013.

Hyderabad: Eminent women activist and author Ms. Jameela Nishat asked the girls not to remain silent on sexual harassment for fear of “izzat” but report to Internal Complaint Committee (ICC). “Anything you find inappropriate; you can file a complaint about it in ICC.”

While addressing an awareness programme held at Maulana Azad National Urdu University (MANUU) today she recalled a case of Dalit girl in a central university and informed about various shades of sexual harassment and the ones that happen at academic place especially during research. Ms. Jameela Nishat also dismissed the patriarchal mindset which describes women as “Weaker Sex”.

The programme was organized by the Internal Complaint Committee (ICC), MANUU to commemorate 8 years of enactment of ‘Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act of 2013 at the auditorium of Syed Hamid Centre Library.

Prof. Shahida, Director, Centre for Women Studies presided over. In her presidential remarks, she said there is a need to amend the Act to include sexual harassment cases related to transgenders and persons with disabilities. The Act helped in catching the culprit. She urged the audience to do away with the “culture of silence” in cases of sexual harassment. Referring to perpetrators, she advised teachers and parents to “make them human” right from a young age.

Prof. Mohd. Shahid, Department of Social Work at MANUU, said that very few cases of sexual harassment were reported and those reported, reach much later after the incidents had occurred. He stressed on the need to organize multiple workshops within the organization to sensitize students and teachers on the subject.

Prof. Shugufta Shaheen, chairperson of the ICC, highlighted the importance of awareness about sexual harassment. She remarked, “Awareness must come from within. It should begin at school level and at homes.” ICC convener, Dr. Shamsuddin Ansari and ICC member, Dr Bibi Raza Khatoon also joined the program.

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